Everyone on two wheels knows the risks of riding but for true enthusiasts, the love and passion counters the risk, and there is a calculated and decided ‘if ya gotta go... do it doing something you love’ attitude among riders, there has to be. Especially these days with the increased distraction to drivers and hazards on the road, it is not that we don’t acknowledge the seriousness or impact of an accident or think we will defy the odds, it is just a decision to not let fear stop us. We ride defensively, aware and with safety in mind.
On the evening of June 19, 2020 a father and daughter duo did exactly that, put fear aside and set out to enjoy the ride. He was meeting her at work and they were just riding home, they did everything right, the accident found them anyway.
Abby, at 17 with a season of riding behind her, was in the lead with Dad close behind, when a car crossed the center line and hit Abby head on, with Dad going down behind her.
As a rider we all know that feeling that you get deep in your soul when you hear of a car vs bike head on.. We know the odds.. We know the nightmare.
For this dad, it was the worst thing imaginable unfolding in front of his eyes. It was a long night and couple of days to come, but thanks to his quick actions in the moment and the actions of all the emergency responders, the life flight team, the Doctors and nurses, everyone involved and especially Abby’s incredible strength and determination (with a heavy dose of stubborn thrown in for good measure), she will be OK!
It is a long road of physical, and emotional healing for all, to come but she will be alright... they will be alright.
I got the call from a frantic friend after it happened checking on us, I somehow knew in my soul that this one was going to impact me personally, and set about discreetly contacting the riding community to find out who. When I heard it was my childhood riding buddy, we went through some moments on back with our Dads at young ages, and his daughter and my heart and soul ached. I waited to hear the outcome and was never more happy to hear she made it through the night, but I knew it wasn’t over yet, however, I know both Abby’s mother and father, so indirectly, I knew the strength, and pure goodness within this young lady. Dad was amazing at keeping all of us who love them appraised of her progress via his posts, remarkably through it all they kept their humor. He let us know about the battles she was fighting and winning like a warrior. When she was finally able to communicate to friends and family, she had dad hold the phone and sent us out a photo captioned “I Lived Bitches”! We had our proof that despite this nightmare our Abby pulled through.
The riding community is a family, and immediately people started asking what they needed. Their community at home had things well under control, with neighbors taking care of the farm, delivering a freezer full of food (yes freezer and all), the family stepped in to help with the girls and critters still at home, so all that was left was to help Abby feel the love.
After talking to Dad we decided a bike run by the house would suit just fine, Abby hasn’t lost her love to ride through it all, yes, there was a moment of mourning for her ride then onto deciding what she is getting next. Sooo a ride it would be!!! Abby’s Warrior Ride was created.
Gadget, Lil’Lady and I were honored to take on organizing it for them, we all decided on mid September to give Abby time to get home from the Hospital. It was now the end of June and they hoped she would be home by the end of August. Who knew she would not be ok with that timeline and ended up home in JULY!! The date had already been set and so we left it, thinking she would be able to come out to watch us go by with more mobility. It turned out to be the best plan.
Finally the day had come, we had a good response to the event online but like everything, we know the numbers on paper don't always match the turn out. It was going to be a nice day after a week of rain so we had high hopes we would get upwards of 50 bikes show up. We were asking them to come a bit out of the way after all, so who knew... (Please keep in mind this is RURAL Nova Scotia, Upper Stewiacke to be precise, so feel free to google earth that and see what I mean, but it is beautiful there.)
We would have been happy with that, thinking, 50’ish bikes would give a pretty good show as we rolled by Abby at the house… We were ready, or so we thought, we had a friend set to ride as lead bike (they even had a flag!) with Dad and sister behind them (YES.. did I mention Abby’s Dad came out to ride with us, on the bike he had been riding that day, over the exact spot it happened, with his youngest on back… that is the STRONG of this family) Gadget and Lil’lady were parked to be mid pack with the camera ready to roll and I was taking the back.
Well, the motofamily came out en masse and with tons of love!! We had over 200 bikes show up, many two up and some with dogs! We were a sight to see!! It took over six and half minutes for all to get out of the parking lot and we took up a solid couple of KM of road. Thunder rolled through the Stewiacke Valley that day in support of an Amazing Family. People in the community came out to wave, record and cheer as we went by, showing us their love for their neighbors. The videos, photos and comments of love and support broke the internet that day. Special thanks to Steve Currie of Currie Cinemedia for coverage of the Ride.
We had set to gather after the 50km ride at the elementary school just by their home, so Abby could come see us all, all we could do was hope the parking lot there would fit everyone. It was a sight to see!!
We give our MASSIVE Thanks and Love to the motofam, for helping boost Abby’s spirit, the family’s spirit and the community that day and I am sure for the weeks to come!
As Always much Love and Respect, Forever two wheels Rubber side down.
The struggles of “normal life” during 2020 are now starting to morph into the new normal. The restrictions and new “must do’s” are becoming a habit for many and people are getting used to the new way to socialize… NOT!
We are still missing our rides and rallies the way they were in years gone by. Summer being filled with weeknight runs to nearby communities for their ‘Bike Night” and weekends filled with Rallies. The towns are feeling the punch from the lack of business those rallies brought in and the local economy is hurting.
Through all this though, was a weekend of fun and games, brother/sisterhood, riding, socializing, and helping a small community in Nova Scotia that has struggled more than most through 2020. Portapique, Nova Scotia.
The Boyd family has been in the Portapique area for over 6 generations and started hosting the Northern Riders - East Coast Howl in 2017. The Howl raises money for the community, this year specifically, the cemetery. Like many charities and community groups, fundraising has been hard through 2020, so this year, the Boyd family stepped up and raised the bar by taking their usual one day event and making it a weekend to remember! I am pleased to say I believe the weekend will be a new trend!
We were first in line to get our tickets (by ticket i mean a gorgeous hoodie or Tshirt) and we were off!! In saying first I literally mean first, we rode out the week before to meet JD on site and secure our spot. When we got there, what seemed to be a field was really a gorgeous area prime for camping, a bike rodeo, a pig roast, a live band, a canteen, and a dirtbike track for the kids (big and small). It was impressive!!
The Boyd family doesn't play around and they take treating their guests to fun and kindness very seriously. They added many brand new picnic tables and portapotties to the site to make sure everyone was comfortable, they opened up a new section of land to accommodate more tents and brought in a tractor to host hay rides to the beach!
Getting to know JD, Greg and their family was one of the many highlights for us and we can’t thank them enough for making Lil’Lady feel like a part of the family right from the start, YES, this is a kid friendly weekend! It is all about the family when you are with the Boyd’s.
There were a few planned group rides that took us around the area, and off course the bike rodeo! Gadget and Lil’Lady held their own but Lil’Lady may have come out ahead in a few of the events, with a bruise or two to prove it. When she plays she plays to win. Haha. They had a slow roll race, barrel push, plank race and ring toss to name a few. Competition was high that afternoon but fun was had by ALL!
It wasn’t just about fun and games, we did fundraising too with a few various draws etc and they managed to raise $1150 for the cemetery, way to go Boyd Family!!!
I look forward to next year and am happy to say this will be an annual event for us, so when we make it through this year and start planning 2021, make sure you get to the Northern Riders 4th East Coast Howl, you will be glad you did!
Stay Tune for more footage to come!!
Coastal Gypzies (along with Canadian Motorcycle Tourism Association) is excited to be heading to http://www.bikeatlantic.ca .. Keep watching for all the excitement live from the show this Saturday!!
Do you have your Fave places to go? Do you know a volunteer deserving of a holla?? Is it in a town of 99K or less??? Canadian Motorcycle Tourism Association wants to recognize them!! So go nominate your choice now!!!
On February 22 & 23 the Halifax Exhibition Center was the home of the very first East Coast Women’s Show! From the moment the doors opened ladies of all ages poured through the doors excitedly, to see what awaits them. There were door prizes and 5050 sales in the lobby along with beautiful smiling faces to welcome you and let you know what presenters were scheduled for the weekend. The first pleasant surprise that set this show apart from others I have been to was that your entrance fee got you in for the whole weekend! So no worries if your ‘must see’ presenters were scheduled for different days! There was enough to see and keep you busy for the weekend.
As Little Lady and I made our way through the beautifully decorated archway the sweet smells of home-made sweets and candy filled my senses. To one side was the sweet treats of handmade cakes, squares and pretzels from the Cake Lady, with candy on the other.
Making our way along the first row of vendors we were offered a free custom bra fitting by Embrace your Curves, the bra educators! They had lots of fantastic tips and information on how to know you are wearing the right garment for both comfort and body health. They had a gorgeous selection of quality clothes to look through, and more then just bras!
After getting your wardrobe in shape you could stop by the fitness tent and have a hand at testing your posture, figuring out a workout plan that works for you and talking to some great fitness guides.
I was so pleased to talk to the ladies at The Compassionate Closet. They are a “New to You” that gives all profit to Hospice Halifax. Hospice Halifax is a compassionate and supportive community dedicated to making the end of life process as meaningful and comfortable as possible for all.
Frocked Up had some amazing Maritime themed clothing for those wanting to represent, and for those who want to show off they were here and loved it like we do!
By now, we have toured through the rows of amazing vendors, we had handmade furnishings by Randy Mugford, handmade bath products by Sweet Sisters Bath Bakery, and the booth that held Little Lady captive was Jewelry Designs By Heather.
I was so taken with the amazing moss art booth, made from Norweign moss by fellow motorcyclist Stace Bleich. Stace was there with Nature Scenes who do more than just make art. They can help make your space a greener space! This is a no effort way to help sound buffer your space as well. The moss is preserved so it requires no water! It adds a touch of class to your space and will be sure to start conversations. For an amazing and unique way to soundproof or just some amazing art go to Nature Scenes and talk to Stace! Check out this site for sure!
Of course we had some vendors there representing bike life! Privateers Harley Davidson was there with a beautiful ride! The gang was super helpful and friendly. They had a good selection of this season's new line of clothes, shoes and even a little bling. Little Lady and I had to get our poker chip of course!
GDM Custom leather was there as well, they focus mainly on making belts, bags and other items but are also able to sew on patches and mend clothing. Gary was super friendly and had some gorgeous items on display.
We all like to stand out from the crowd a little, from custom tanks and tattoos to unique bling. When it comes to unique bling, James Dafoe has you covered. He was there from Shediac NB, with his mind blowin wood jewelry and art. He can take any item you have laying around, and incorporate it into his beautiful wood art. From Rings to pens and more he takes what means the most to you and makes it into something you can have with you. He told me of a watch given to him by a loved one that no longer worked, so why not make it into a ring! You can see more of his gorgeous designs and cool ideas on instagram @dafoe_design_ or email him at email@example.com. Speaking of tattoos, we even had Tear Creations mobile Tattoo shop there to talk ink.
One really unique booth that stood out from the crowd was Still Fired Distilleries, they had a great set up looking like a rustic cabin with a call too all to “Drink More Moonshine”. They have many flavors of craft spirits, like Rootbeer and Vanilla Bean. You can find a full list at www.drinkmoremoonshine.ca
With so many vendors there it is hard to just pick a few to mention but I have to wrap up with Spray Paint Art By Nathan Salmon! In just a few minutes he took our logo and turned it into a work of art. Using only spray paint, a plastic bag and piece of paper.
They had a mini and main stage for presenters and an onsite canteen. This show really had it all! Great job ladies, I see even more great things for this show in the years to come!
Have I mentioned how EXCITED Little Lady and I are to be going to the
EAST COAST WOMEN'S SHOW??
Some have been asking me how this reflects on motorcycle lifestyle and I admit that baffles me! How yes it not?? Women are the largest "growing" demographic in motorcycling.. ok I don't know if that is. fact but I bet it is. There are A LOT of women riders.
We have to remember that as much as we wish the bike and the open road is all that matters once you get on that machine.. the reality is that there is still life outside biking.
Sooo if you are around the Halifax Exhibition Centre this weekend come in!!! You will be glad you did!!
See below for the press release from ECWS!!
"Event organizer Heather Gunning says attendees can indulge themselves with “the very best in shopping, fashion, food, entertainment, cosmetics and travel” while spending a relaxing day being pampered with spa treatments, massages and retail therapy.“It’s going to be like one big girl’s day out,” says Gunning. “The Women’s Show is a place where women can find time for themselves, spend a fun day with their girlfriends, shop vendors booths, relax, explore new ideas or products, find exciting activities, enjoy entertainment, register to win great prizes and more.”
Gunning and her family have designed trade shows across Canada for decades. She thought she was ready to retire, but she felt too young and energetic to sit around all day and thought she needed a new project.
“I was thinking about how there were boat shows and home shows and RV shows and bridal shows, but there was nothing that just celebrated women of all ages,” says Gunning. “There wasn’t one big, special event just for women to enjoy. Moms, daughters, aunts, grandmothers, girlfriends — everyone! It’s going to be such an empowering and uplifting show to attend.”
Gunning wound up partnering with her granddaughter, Heather Ireland — a stay-at-home mom of two young children — and they’ve been working on the show together since September.
They’ve already lined up nearly 100 different vendors to set up “mini boutiques” at the East Coast Women’s Show — everything from health and wellness providers to businesses specializing in fashion, jewellery, cosmetics, skincare, aesthetics, gifts, massage therapy, clothing, travel, fitness, home improvement, finance, decorating, food, wine and spirits.
“Attendees can get a massage, get hair extensions, get their makeup done, get teeth whitening, have their eyebrows done, get a bra fitting, have their wardrobe redesigned — there’s so much to try,” says Gunning.
The East Coast Women’s Show will feature a mini stage for makeovers, a cooking stage with live demonstrations and a main stage with entertainment happening every hour — like singing, dancing, Zumba, motivational speaking and more.
Tickets will be available at the door ($11 for adults, $9 for seniors and $8 for students) and valid for both days. Attendees are encouraged to come by Saturday and Sunday so they don’t miss anything.
International World Champion Elvis tribute artist Thane Dunn will take the stage on Sunday as a keynote speaker. With more than a decade as a professional entertainer, Gunning says Thane has a very interesting story to tell — how hard work and dedication and believing in yourself you can help you reach your goals.
Angie Stoker from Porter’s Lake was once named Canada’s first “Mary Kay Millionaire,” and now she’s a world-renowned motivational speaker who will take the stage Saturday and Sunday to talk honestly about her experience in direct sales.
Stoker joined Mary Kay in 1980 with the hope of making $100 a week, and by the time she retired in 2017, she had earned 20 cars, trips around the world and more than $7M in commissions.
Attendees will also have the chance to win great prizes, including beauty products from Bend Beauty, laser acupuncture treatment, free teeth whitening from Inari Wellness and a complete makeover from Renée Martin (The Style Coach).
White Point Beach Resort is offering up a girl’s getaway package so one lucky attendee can bring three of her besties for a weekend away, including meals.
Dany Duguay, a certified in-home caterer and personal chef with 15+ years’ experience, is offering a home-cooked dinner for four. She’ll come to the winner’s home with everything she needs to prepare a fabulous feast in their very own kitchen.
Access Acupuncture is organizing a “One Pin Challenge” where they’ll attempt to relieve at least 60 per cent of your pain with a single acupuncture pin. If you’re willing to let them try, they’ll donate $1 to Bryony house for every extra pin they use.
Fox Harb’r Resort will be setting up a putting green where attendees can pay $2 for the chance to sink a hole-in-one and be entered to win a girlfriend’s getaway package at Fox Harb’r Resort. (All of the putt funds will be donated to Autumn House Amherst.)
Gunning says she is so excited for the weekend to arrive and promises this isn’t a “one-and-done” kind of show. Her goal is to make the East Coast Women’s Show a fun annual experience that can brighten up the “February blahs” for years to come.
“People are thrilled that there’s finally a show for women, and it’s going to be a really fun, uplifting atmosphere,” says Gunning. “We encourage everyone to take your time walking around because there will be so much to see and enjoy. Just relax and take it all in!”
The East Coast Women’s Show runs Saturday, Feb. 22 (10 a.m. to 9 p.m.) and Sunday, Feb. 23 (10 a.m. to 5 p.m.) at the Halifax Exhibition Centre. Tickets are available at the door ($11 for adults, $9 for seniors and $8 for students) and valid for both days. Visit ecwshow.com to learn more."
The Women’s Show is a place where women can find time for themselves, spend a fun day with their girlfriends, shop vendors booths, relax, explore new ideas or products, find exciting activities, enjoy entertainment, register to win great prizes and more.”
Coastal Cruising with Coastal Gypsies
As published on CMTA
Written by Rexy
With snow flying faster than DC on his Harley Sportster, I, Rexy, sit here to plan our 2020 Rides. It looks like the true Canadian North out there but with faith, spring will be here soon. Nova Scotia may be small in size but we are big in adventure.
Not all the adventure is just for the highways, on February 22, join Little Lady and I as we tour the East Coast Women’s Show! Held at Halifax Exhibition Centre, there will be many vendors, music, prizes and more! I know Privateers-Harley Davidson shop will be there and I am sure they will be bringing some bling!
Keep watching the CMTA pages and our group for some exciting news regarding the Halifax International Tattoo! I am not saying anything for sure but I just maybe looking for a date to take to the show *wink*!
Now.. Onto the rides, there are many rides and Ride nights to keep you rolling every night of the week throughout Nova Scotia in the peak riding season. Regular Ride nights of the past are sure to continue in 2020 and we plan to check them all out. Stay tuned for a list of Community Ride nights as they develop!
Coastal Gypsies 2020 Season, officially kicks off on May 2 this year with the Truro’s Blessings of the Bikes! Held in Victoria Park and attended by hundreds of bikers from all over the Maritimes. With awards for largest group and furthest ride. There are vendors, music, food and of course the Blessing. Riders come out for this one regardless of the weather and you can feel the excitement for the season to come!
Our regular bike night is Tuesday Night Bike Night in Masstown, NS. Held about 15 minutes outside Truro, you can go the express way there along Highway 104, or take your time and tour along the wonderful Bay of Fundy. For us, the old highway promises a scenic ride with the Bay at your side. Touring through old farming country on Highway 4, taking every freshly paved turn with just a little twist in the wrist. The meeting spot is held at Masstown Market, where there is always a warm welcome, a designated area for us all to gather and shine, lots of coffee and goodies on hand! Sharon always runs a 50/50 in support of a year end Biker’s Picnic so if you stop in be sure to say “Hi, Great job!” to her as she hustles around!
Bike nights in Masstown usually start mid to end of May and are on just in time to warm the tires for the Bikers Against Child Abuse (B.A.C.A) 100 mile ride. For those of you following along on our Coastal Gypsies Blog you know just how challenging (but super FUN) this ride can be! With a different route each year, they always make sure to scout it out and ensure it suits riders of all levels. They are great making sure all riders know the route and rules before we head out and ensure everyone has a great time. They are prepared for hiccups that may arise and even give out prizes along the way! The ride is followed with an amazing fundraiser dinner and auction raising money for a great cause, supporting and empowering abused children!
Some other rides we plan to check out this year, include but are not limited to;
the Annual Memorial Bikers Run on May 24, hosted by Maritime Motorcycle Touring Association. The MMTA are a group of amazing riders in yellow out to support the events of other organizations. Anyone who loves to ride is welcome.
The Biker’s Down Angel Run on June 20, the annual memorial Angel ride is to remember all of our brothers and sisters who have passed on in the riding community and the proceeds are set aside for condolence donations to the families of fallen riders. Biker’s Down is a not for profit organization established by Nova Scotia Bikers to provide assistance to our Nova Scotian motorcycle enthusiasts of all ages, all makes and all clubs.
The Annual Highway of Heroes Run on August 22, raising awareness about critical incident stress among military members and first responders, organizers hope the event inspires people to be mindful year-round.
With the 2020 rides and rallies events just hitting the airwaves, along with other special events we have planned, we are sure to have a memory packed season. Join us and CMTA as we bring you all the action from the East Coast - Canada’s Ocean Playground!
Check out the events here!! Canadian Motorcycle Tourism Association - Events Calendar
Little Lady and I (Rexy) are super excited to be covering this event for Coastal Gypsies, Canadian Motorcycle Tourism Assoc and Female (Riders) everywhere!!
Look for us there and be sure to say Hi!!!
East Coast Women't show! - “the very best in shopping, fashion, food, entertainment, cosmetics and travel” while spending a relaxing day being pampered with spa treatments, massages and retail therapy.
Feb 22 & 23 - The East Coast Women’s Show runs Saturday, Feb. 22 (10 a.m. to 9 p.m.) and Sunday, Feb. 23 (10 a.m. to 5 p.m.) at the Halifax Exhibition Centre. Tickets are available at the door ($11 for adults, $9 for seniors and $8 for students) and valid for both days. Visit ecwshow.com to learn more.
As it is only January in Nova Scotia I have tried not to start the countdown till spring... but today I caved... I looked. Our neighbours to the north in Newfoundland and Labrador are still digging out while in a state of emergency from the copious amounts of snow that came down last weekend, and they are calling for more for us here in NS as well. Ahhhh it is the season.. the positive part to that is that once you are through January the rest seems to go fast... Feb is a short month then spring technically starts in March..
Not that March riding is always possible... but some years.. for us die hards... it is! May the powers that be and Mother Nature decree 2020 year of the March ride!! hahah No matter.. come April.. In April I will be out!! This is know. It will be a year of having my license this April so if I can do it brand new.. I can do it now.
While we wait though.. let me tell you about the OTHER ride moment I mentioned in my previous post. I was talking about scary moments of 2019.. While the rain ride was bad.. this brief moment is likely one of the scariest so far. I don't know if I registered how scary while in the moment.. but I sure did for the 10km after..
We had been riding through Northern New Brunswick, on a road that was tarred gravel for many many KM, and finally got into Quebec. Riding slow on that sketchy, marbly road all day was a tad tiring but we made it and were well onto good roads again when we rounded a corner to see Construction ahead signs... about 10 feet before it actually started. Not much notice indeed... the first few 100 feet was bad, gravel the size of golfballs.. slow and steady and ready for anything, we made it over. The gravel then gave way to just mud... now...
For those of you who don't know.. QC takes a construction break in the summer for two weeks.. we just happened to travel during it.. so YAY to not having to wait on construction along the way.. BOOO for mud roads that have seen rain and cars for two weeks with no maintenance.
Luckily I had DC in my ear encouraging me along.. .which would have been really cool if you didn't hear the "oh shit" tone in his voice.. hahah He was in the lead so I kinda knew when something was coming our way..
For the most part it wasn't tooo bad.. follow in the "track" aka rut (the ruts didn't have the big loose gravel in them that between the ruts had.. it was really a 'pick your evil' kinda moment) that you were in and just keep it steady.. then you realized just how close to that huge bank the track was getting.. annnnd that said track now seems to have a significant slope to it... Bankside.... just focus on the track ahead of you.. keep your balance steady... ignore the other traffic and commotion around you and trust in your ride... just trust in your ride...
WHEW.. ok we made it along the bank and the track seems to have levelled out again.. keep moving....
Then we realized the road was going down a rather insanely sloped hill... I remember thinking... "REALLLY???Could they put anymore nasty into one small 5km stretch???!!!!"
OK I was soooo sorry I thought that, apparently yes.. they could..
At the bottom of said steep hill in the mud rut.. was a missing bridge.. in its place was a sharp "S" turn path constructed with concrete dividers. BUUUUT... on the other side of that... was glorious pavement.. normal, two lane road.. complete with painted lines and everything.
This whole stretch was a true test to " trusting your skills" and "don't think; just ride". Which under normal circumstances likely wouldn't be bad but let's remember I had been riding for a whopping 3 whole months at this point... WHAT DEVELOPED SKILLS?? hahaha
It is Clear to me however, that I actually was listening to my dad on alllll those rides when he would explain to me what to do in various situations as we would ride. Whenever we were out together on his goldwing, he would tell me what he was doing and why, when we came across sketchy situations... Good to know I listened to something he taught me. I think he would be proud.
The whole time somewhere in the back of my mind I was hoping that the cameras were still recording.. just one of them, sadly as this was getting into late afternoon they were all dead, so no photos...
We now reference that small section of the trip as "The Mudslide". Life happens when you are out living it.
Ride Safe and Ride On!!!
First off .. what's a Noob? Well it is a new rider.. as I just got my license last April that is definitely me. Some will argue that you are a noob for a few years.. some say it is for XX miles ridden... others will say.. "hey we are all Noobs".. whichever way you look at it.. I am a noob. Sure I got 7000+ km in this year but still so much to learn.. experience. I am ok with that! I am riding and that is what matters.. I never cared about labels anyway.
I have had some really awesome moments in year one and some that well.. just scared the crap out of me. Then.. there was the one ride.. yes..that one.. the only one .. which was miserable.
It just so happened to be my first group ride.. exactly 3 weeks after getting my license. By this time I had gotten out in town and roamed around.. I was even happy that I was cool going 80 km/h.. I may have even hit 100km/h by this point..but I wasn't ready. Not for this... I am still not ready... nor do I think I will ever choose to be. lol.. There will be times I get caught in freezing cold bitter side blowing wind and rain... but It better come out of the blue or I won't be out in the first place. HAHA..
A neighbour has a group he rides with and they do an annual fundraiser run.. "Come with us.. it will be a blast" .. so we did. All three of us.. I was already nervous about the segment that was on the highway as I hadn't done that yet.. but what could go wrong when your with a group right??... WELL we knew it may call for rain.. it was even misting on the way to the meet spot... but I was sure it wouldn't be that bad.... I just wanted to ride. HUMPH!!!!
We were going over the "mountain" to stop point one.. then through to check two.,, highway back to town for supper... this is a total of about 100km in total... maybe more... I can't remember.... I didn't do it all.. I tapped out.. openly.. willingly.. eagerly.. tapped out!
Shortly after leaving the meet spot the rain really started.. heavy.. cold... blinding rain..DC had been great and gotten RainX for the helmets.. and I Guess it worked.. I was to nervous to turn my head enough for the rain to really roll off.. and I was fogging up so I am not sure I would have known if it did clear.. lol..
L (riding two up with DC.. ) was lacking in proper rain gear.. my leathers were soaked and the COLD rain was hammering at us straight on from the left side~! I was sooo not ready... I had one thought the whole way over the mountain.. get to the first pit stop,.. go home. OHHHH and HELL NO TO HIGHWAY TODAY!!! LOL...
I wasn't ready for that wind. I was new and learning to control my machine, I hadn't gotten the hang of doing it with that much side wind or with rain.. never mind both together... I couldn't see... I also felt like I was holding up the last guy who was guard... it made me feel horrible to think I was sucking the joy out of his ride poor guy...
I can not say enough... I WAS NOT READY! I am not sure there is any way to really know if you are ready for a group ride.. for a bad weather ride... or for any challenge that you will encounter while riding until you are in the situation but one thing I can tell you... when you figure out that you are in over your head.. there is NO SHAME in tapping out... do it... Tap! tap! tap and do it at the first chance you get!
Which for me was about 3 seconds after stopping at pit stop one. I felt bad for DC but the look of relief on L's face was reinforcement. She was new to riding too... Quinn (DC's gorgeous Harley Sportster) is amazing for one.. not so much for the passenger.. especially one new to riding. She was wet.. tired and sore. Quinns seat is a bit of a struggle to stay up on anyway as it slopes back a bit but in the rain.. but in nylon pants.. it was near impossible.. I was so scared she was coming off the back.. In front of a blind me!
The crew understood and I am sure were secretly a little happy about me calling it, though they were so encouraging and caring about it....BUT.... now they could giver'er and get it done too.. no waiting on me..
The great thing was that we happened to be minutes from my Mom's house... sooo warm clothes and soup.. here we come.
We went over and begged use of the clothes dryer.. bummed a can of soup and at the first sign of a break in the rain made the dash over the mountain for home.
The wind was super strong and scary a couple of times at the top of the mountain but seemed a lot more manageable knowing I was homeward bound.
We arrived at the restaurant behind the crew but in time to eat and enjoy the festivities and remaining fundraising events. They actually seemed relieved that I made it home... like they were worried about me... SHEEEESH>.. ok yeah it was that bad.
I got a little prize too.. There was a little speech (designed to make me feel better and less loser'ish) about the first lesson in riding is to know your limits.. and follow them.
All in all... even though I was miserable... it was a great experience.. if nothing else for the lesson learned..
I look forward to the ride this season so they can see how far I have come... as long as it isn't calling for rain that day..
While I would like to say this was the scariest moment of 2019 on two wheels.. I am afraid there is just one more...
Stay tune for the next post to hear more about Mud sliding on two wheels while fully packed for camping.. LOL...
Until then... Ride Safe and Ride ON! - Noobie J